Record

Authorised form of nameDavy; Sir; Humphry (1778 - 1829); physicist
Dates1778 - 1829
NationalityBritish
Place of birthPenzance, Cornwall, England
Date of birth17 December 1778
Place of deathHotel room, Geneva, Switzerland
Date of death29 May 1829
Dates and placesBurial:
Plain-Palais cemetery, Geneva, Switzerland
Research fieldChemistry
ActivityCareer:
Apprenticed to a surgeon in Penzance and studied chemistry and chemical experimentation; assistant, Sir Thomas Beddoes' Pneumatic Institute, Bristol and experimented on gases; Assistant lecturer on Chemistry, Royal Institution, London (1801); Director, Royal Institution (1805); discovered potassium (1807) and other elements; resigned chair of Chemistry at Royal Institution (1813); invented safety lamp (1815)
The foremost British chemist of his day, he rose to prominence at the Pneumatic Institute in Bristol, before moving to the Royal Institution in London, and eventually became President of the Royal Society. His major contributions to science include the physiological effects of nitrous oxide (laughing gas), the discovery of potassium and sodium, the development of electro-chemistry, the miners' safety lamp, the electro-chemical protection of the copper sheeting of Royal Navy vessels, the conservation of the Herculaneum papyri and seeking to improve the quality of optical glass. As a friend of Coleridge, Southey and Wordsworth, Davy was also a Romantic poet and was almost certainly the chemist whom Mary Shelley had in mind when she described the teacher of Victor Frankenstein.
Honours:
Kt 1812; Bt 1818
Membership categoryFellow
Date of election17/11/1803
Royal Society activityRoyal Society roles:
Sec 1807-1812; PRS 1820-1827
Medals and prizes:
Copley Medal 1805; Rumford Medal 1816; Royal Medal 1827
Lectures:
Bakerian 1806-1810, 1826
RelationshipsSon of Robert Davy, woodcarver, and Grace Millet; brother of John Davy (FRS 1814); married Mrs Apreece, widow of Shuckburgh Ashly Apreece
SourcesSources:
Bulloch's Roll; DNB; DSB
References:
Gudrun Richardson, 'A Norfolk Network within the Royal Society' in NR 2002 vol 56 pp 27-39, plate
Sydney Ross, 'The Search for Electromagnetic Induction 1820-1831' in NR 1965 vol 20 pp 184-219
Stephen G Brush, 'The Royal Society's First Rejection of the Kinetic Theory of Gases (1821), John Herapath versus Humphry Davy' in NR 1963 vol 18 pp 161-180
Sir Harold Hartley, 'The Debt of Engineering to Fellows of the Royal Society' in NR 1961 vol 16 pp 136-140
Sir Harold Hartley, 'A Letter From Richard Phillips, FRS (1778-1857) to Michael Faraday, FRS (1791-1867)' in NR 1965 vol 20 pp 220-223
Roger Sharrock, 'The Chemist and the Poet: Sir Humphry Davy and the Preface to Lyrical Ballads' in NR 1962 vol 17 pp 57-76
R K Bluhm, 'A Note on the Origin of the Society's Conversaziones' in NR 1958 vol 13 pp 61-63
N G Coley, 'The Animal Chemistry Club; Assistant Society to the Royal Society' in NR 1967 vol 22 pp 173-185
L F Gilbert, 'The Election to the Presidency of the Royal Society in 1820' in NR 1954-55 vol 11 pp 256-279
G R de Beer, 'The Relations between Fellows of the Royal Society and French Men of Science when France and Britain were at War' in NR 1952 vol 9 pp 244-299
F F Cartwright, 'The Association of Thomas Beddoes, MD with James Watt, FRS' in NR 1967 vol 22 pp 131-143, plate
Donald McDonald, 'Smithson Tennant, FRS (1761-1815)' in NR 1962 vol 17 pp 77-94
C Harrison Dwight, 'Count Rumford' in NR 1954-55 vol 11 pp 189-201
Garry J Tee, 'Relics of Davy and Faraday in New Zealand' in NR 1998 vol 52 pp 93-102
P M Harman, 'The Chemist in the World', review of David Knight, Humphry Davy, Science and Power in NR 1997 vol 51 pp 343-344, plate
Sir John Meurig Thomas, 'Sir Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford and the Royal Institution' in NR 1999 vol 53 pp 11-25
Stephen F Mason, 'Poet, Chemist - and Sage?', review of David Knight, Humphry Davy: Science and Power in NR 1993 vol 47 pp 317-319, plate
Alan Q Morton, 'Previous Public Perceptions of Science', review of Larry Stewart, The Rise of Public Science: Rhetoric, Technology and Natural Philosophy in Newtonian Britain, 1660-1750 and Jan Golinski, Science as Public Culture: Chemistry and Enlightenment in Britain, 1760-1820 in NR 1994 vol 48 pp 157-159
C W P MacArthur, 'Davy's Differences With Gay-Lussac and Thenard: New Light on Events in Paris and on the Transmission and Translation of Davy's Papers in 1810' in NR 1984-85 vol 39 pp 207-228
G N Cantor, 'Thomas Young's Lectures at the Royal Institution' in NR 1970 vol 25 pp 87-112
K K Schwarz, 'Faraday and Babbage' in NR 2002 vol 56 pp367-381
J Corden, 'Web of Science History' project in NR 2002 vol 56 pp 383-388
R W Jones, 'Dalton's unfortunate choice' in NR 2003 vol 57 pp 15-33
W P Griffith and P J T Morris, 'Charles Hatchett FRS (1765 - 1847), chemist and discoverer of niobium' in NR 2003 vol 57 pp 299 - 316
J S Rowlinson, 'A national treasure house. <i>'The common purposes of life': science and society at the Royal Institution of Great Britain</i> ed Frank A J L James ' in NR 2004 vol 58 pp 105-106
M Crosland, 'Relationships between the Royal Society and the Academie des Sciences in the late eighteenth century' in NR 2005 vol 59 pp 25-34
P R Unwin & R W Unwin, 'Humphry Davy and the Royal Institution of Great Britain' in NR 2009 vol 63 pp7-33
James, Frank An electronic edition of RI MS HD 11 has been published which includes, among other items, drafts of Humphry Davy's 1816 paper on the miners' safety lamp. Further details can be found at: http://www.archive-editions.co.uk/index.php/file-downloads/the-davy-lamp-inventing-the-miners-safety-lamp
Virtual International Authority Filehttp://viaf.org/viaf/29630108
Royal Society codeNA8200
Archives associated with this Fellow
Reference numberTitleDate
MC/3/1Letter from L. A. Necker, Prince of Wales Coffeehouse, Leicester Place, to the Royal Society2 January 1839
MM/18/44Letter from Harold Brewer Hartley to Christina Butler6 July 1952
MM/18/47Letter from Harold Brewer Hartley to Christina Butler
MM/18/45Letter from Harold Brewer Hartley to Christina Butler28 July 1952
DM/1/69Draft of a letter from Humphry Davy to Sir Robert Peel20 December 1825
MC/3Volume 3 of miscellaneous correspondence regarding business matters, sent to the Royal Society1839-1843
AP/11/6Unpublished paper, 'On the agency of the electro-magnetic principle in giving movement and impulse to the planetary system' by Edmund Cartwright[1822]
MM/3/80Letter from Anthony Blagoewitsch, Hungary, to Humphry Davy18 December 1822
MC/4Volume 4 of miscellaneous correspondence regarding business matters, sent to the Royal Society1844-1850
MM/13/21Extract from the Will of Sir Humphry DavyNovember 1829
MM/17/96Letter from Victor Horsley to Robert Harrison, Assistant Secretary, Royal Society26 December 1896
AP/13/28Unpublished paper, address as President of the Royal Society by Davies Gilbert30 November 1829
MM/14/122'Account of the Silver Plate melted down for the Royal Society' June 1869
DM/3/4Letter from J W Horton (for Lord Bathurst), Downing Street, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society29 November 1823
MM/14/126Description of the silver plate to be melted down for the Davy Medal Fund 1817
MM/14/123Receipt from the Royal Mint, of Plate to be melted down for the Davy Medal Fund 13 May 1869
MM/14/127Inventory of Plate to be melted down for the Davy Medal Fund 1869
MM/14/124Receipt from the Royal Mint, of Plate to be melted down for the Davy Medal Fund 21 June 1869
MM/17/97Letter from Victoria Mary Louise King to Robert Harrison, Assistant Secretary, Royal Society5 January 1897
AP/11/24Unpublished letter, regarding parallel lines and the sum of angles from J [John] Walsh to J F W [John Frederick William] Herschel10 January 1824
MM/21/28Letter from John D Enys8 March 1894
DM/3/74Letter from Stephen Lee, Asssistant Secretary, Royal Society, to Sir Humphry Davy5 December 1823
DM/1/92Memorandum on the cost of printing the volume of the 'Philosophical Transactions' containing Sir Humphry Davy's discoursesc.1828
DM/2/113'An inventory of the Goods...of Mr Newton on the premises of No 3 Duke Street Manchester Square'19 June 1830
DM/1/74Letter from Robert Peel to Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society3 December 1825
DM/2/112Signed statement by Davies Gilbert re Sir Thomas Lawrence's portrait of Sir Humphry Davyc.1830
DM/2/115Letter from Jane Davy to the Royal Societyc.1839
DM/3/5Letter from Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society, to Lord Bathurst[21 November 1823]
AP/8/8Unpublished paper, 'The description of an organ by which the eyes of birds are accommodated to the different distances of objects' by Philip Crampton7 June 1811
DM/3/71Letter from Henry Woodthorpe, Guildhall, to Sir Humphry Davy17 November 1823
DM/3/8Letter from H Legge & Middleton, Navy Office, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society7 May 1823
DM/3/7J Martin & R Sepping, Navy Office, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society21 January 1823
DM/4/117Letter from Martin, Sepping, Legge, Navy Office, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society28 May 1823
DM/4/129Letter from George Harrison, Treasury Chambers, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society1 April 1823
AP/11/20Unpublished paper, 'On the question as to the evolution of heat, during the coagulation of the blood' by Charles Scudamore[1823]
P/0210Portrait of Davy, Sir Humphry
AP/12/15Unpublished letters, on magnetic variation and poles from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry DavySeptember 1825 - January 1827
AP/12/7Unpublished letter, 'Observations on the changes which have taken place in some antient [ancient] alloys of copper' from John Davy to Sir Humphry Davy[1825]
AP/11/14Unpublished paper and letter, on a new system of navigation by [Jean François?] PoulliotOctober 1823
AP/13/13Unpublished paper and letter, 'On the importance of an expedition to determine the exact position of the NW [northwest] magnetic pole' by Colonel [John] MacdonaldMarch 1828
CB/1/1/221Letter from Claude Louis Berthollet to Charles Blagden29 January 1808
MM/1/5Letter from Humphry Davy to William Jacob4 July 1820
MS/859/2/37Letter of appointment by Humphry Davy , nominating Charles Hatchett as Deputy President of the Royal Society7 December 1820
MM/6/72Letter from Humphry Davy, Valley of Chamonix, to Henry Warburton4 July 1814
MM/6/87Letter from Humphry Davy to William Hyde Wollaston25 June 1820
MM/15/1Copy of "Further Experiments and Observations on Iodine", by Humphry Davy22 March 1814
IM/005692Davy, Sir Humphry2003
PT/73/5/1Drawings, miners' safety lamp by [Humphry Davy] [1815]
PT/73/5/2Drawings, miners' safety lamp by [Humphry Davy] [1815]
NLB/8/644Copy letter from Herbert Rix, to A W Hutton, Librarian, National Liberal Club1 December 1893
PT/1/18Paper, 'On the quantity of carbon in carbonic acid' by Wm [William] Allen and Wm [William] Hasledine Pepys[1807]
PT/17/1Paper, 'Some curious facts respecting the walrus and seal, discovered by the examination of specimens brought to England by the different ships lately returned from the polar circle' by Sir Everard Home in a letter to Sir H [Humphry] Davy11 February 1824
NLB/17/692Copy letter from Arthur Bray Kempe, to Sir James 8 December 1898
NLB/18/277Copy letter from Michael Foster, to Professor W R Dunstan, Fellow of the Royal Society19 February 1899
NLB/20/69Copy letter from Robert William Frederick Harrison, to Professor William Augustus Tilden, Fellow of the Royal Society25 January 1900
MC/1Volume 1 of miscellaneous correspondence regarding business matters, sent to the Royal Society1800-1831
PT/17/1/1Manuscript, 'Some curious facts respecting the walrus and seal, discovered by the examination of specimens brought to England by the different ships lately returned from the polar circle' by Sir Everard Home in a letter to Sir H [Humphry] Davy11 February 1824
PT/3/27Paper, 'Experiments on ammonia, and an account of a new method of analyzing it, by combustion with oxygen and other gases' in a letter to Humphry Davy from Will [William] Henry[1809]
MS/251/2Letter from Humphry Davy to William Buckland9 March [watermark 1820]
MS/251/12Letter from Humphry Davy, Cobham Hall, to William Buckland, Oxford22 November [postmark 21 November 1822]
MC/1/213Letter from [Archibald] Keightley, 5 Hare Court, Temple, to Davies Gilbert, President of the Royal Society, and [James] Hudson, Assistant Secretary of the Society 12 April 1830
PT/2/18Paper, ['Description of an apparatus for the analysis of the compound inflammable gases by slow combustion; with experiments on the gas from coal, explaining application'] by William Henry19 May 1808
MC/1/71Letter from Davies Gilbert, Treasurer of the Royal Society, East Bourne, to the Royal Society 19 July 1821
PT/16/16Paper, 'Note on the condensation of muriatic acid gas into the liquid form' by Sir Humphry Davy[1823]
PT/18/18Paper, 'The Bakerian Lecture. On the relations of electrical and chemical changes' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1826]
PT/5/3Paper, 'On the expansion of any functions of multinomials' by Tho [Thomas] Knight[1811]
PT/9/13Paper, 'On the action of acids on the salts usually called hyper-oxy-muriates and on the gases produced from them' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy15 February 1815
L&P/12/102Paper, 'A method of analysing stones containing fixed alkali by means of boracic acid' by Humphry Davy1805
PT/16/14Paper, 'On a new phaenomena of electro-magnetism' by Sir Humphry Davy[1823]
PT/10/5Paper, 'Further experiments on the combustion of explosive mixtures confined by wire gauze, with some observations on flame' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1816]
PT/3/28Paper, 'New analytical researches on the nature of certain bodies being an appendix to the Bakerian Lecture for 1808' by Humphry Davy[1809]
P/0032Portrait of Davy, Sir Humphry
PT/5/8Paper, 'On a combination of oxymuriatic gas and oxygene' by H [Humphry] Davy[1811]
PT/12/17Paper, 'New experiments on some of the combinations of phosphorus' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1818]
PT/2/1Paper, 'On some new phaenomena of chemical changes produced by electricity, particularly, the decomposition of the fixed alkalies and the exhibition of the new substances which constitute their bases and on the nature of ammonia' by Humphry Davy[1807]
PT/2/23Paper, 'Electrochemical reserches [sic] on the decomposition of the earths, with observations on the metal obtained from the alkaline earth, and on the amalgam procured from ammonia' by Humphry Davy[1808]
L&P/11/167Paper, 'Account of some galvanic combinations' by Humphry Davy1801
PT/12/10Paper, 'On the fallacy of the experiments in which water is said to have been formed by the decomposition of chlorine' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1818]
MC/1/105Letter from Dan Copsy [?], Mount House, Braintree, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society16 March 1824
PT/7/13Paper, 'On some properties of light' in a letter from David Brewster to Sir H [Humphry] Davy1812-1813
PT/13/11Paper, 'Some observations on the formation of mists in particular situations' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy8 December 1818
PT/10/2Paper, 'An account of an invention for giving light in explosive mixtures of fire damp in coal mines by consuming the fire damp' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1815]
PT/8/5Paper, 'An account of some new experiments on the fluoric compounds with some observations on other objects of chemical enquiry' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1814]
PT/8/6Paper, 'Some experiments and observations on a new substance which becomes a violet colored gas by heat' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy10 December 1813
PT/16/15Paper, 'On fluid chlorine' by M [Michael] Faraday[1823]
PT/16/8Paper, 'Observations on the heights of places in the trigonometrical survey of Great Britain' by B [Benjamin] BevanFebruary 1822
PT/11/21Paper, 'Observations on the temperature of the ocean and atmosphere, and on the density of sea water, made during a voyage to Ceylon [Sri Lanka]' by John Davy in a letter to Sir H [Humphry] Davy3 November 1816
PT/2/24Paper, 'Phil [Philosophical] Trans [Transactions] 1809, portion of Davy's paper' by Humphry Davy[1808]
PT/16/24Paper, 'An account of experiments made with an invariable pendulum at New South Wales' by Major Gen Sir Thos [Thomas] Brisbane[1823]
PT/16/25Paper, 'On the diurnal deviations of the horizontal needle when under the influence of magnets' by Samuel Hunter Christie[1823]
PT/7/28Paper, 'Some further observations on a new detonating substance' in a letter from Sir H [Humphry] Davy to the Right Hon Sir Joseph Banks20 June 1813
PT/11/7Paper, 'Some new experiments and observations on the combustion of gaseous mixtures, with an account of a method for keeping a continued light in mixtures of inflammable gases and air without flame' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1817]
PT/7/20Paper, 'On a new construction of a condenser and air pump' by the Rev Gilbert Austin in a letter to Sir H [Humphry] Davy5 December 1811
PT/16/17Paper, 'Of the motions of the eye in illustration of the uses of the muscles and nerves of the orbit' by Charles Bell[1823]
PT/7/31Paper, 'Some experiments and observations on the substances produced in different chemical processes on fluor spar [fluorite]' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1813]
PT/11/9Paper, 'On a new fulminating platinum' by Edmund Davy20 December 1816
PT/4/14Paper, 'Researches on the muriatic acid in its different states, with some experiments on sulphur and phosphorus' by H [Humphry] Davy[1810]
PT/8/25Paper, 'Further experiments and observations on iodine' by Sir H [Humphry] DavyMarch - August 1814
PT/10/1Paper, 'On the fire damp of coal mines and on a lantern for preventing its explosion' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1815]
IM/001094Davy, Sir Humphrynd
PT/17/2Paper, 'Additional experiments and observations on the application of electrical combinations to the preservation of the copper sheathing of ships and to other purposes' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1824]
PT/6/18Paper, 'An account of some experiments on different combinations of fluoric acid' by Mr J [John] Davy[1812]
PT/2/14Paper, 'On the alterations that have taken place in the structure of rocks, on the surface of the basaltic country in the counties of Derry and Antrim' from William Richardson to Humphry Davy18 April 1808
PT/12/15Paper, 'On the urinary organs and secretion of some of the amphibia' by John Davy25 March 1817
PT/7/1Paper, 'On a new detonating compound' in a letter from Sir H [Humphry] Davy to Right Hon Sir Jos [Joseph] Banks[1812]
PT/6/5Paper, 'On a gaseous compound of carbonic oxide and chlorine' by John Davy[1811]
PT/9/12Paper, 'Some experiments on a solid compound of iodine and oxygene and on its chemical agencies' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy12 February 1815
PT/5/13Paper, 'On the solar eclipse which is said to have been predicted by Thales' by Francis BailyNovember 1810
PT/1/2Paper, 'On some chemical agencies of electricity being the Bakerian Lecture' by Humphry Davy[1806]
L&P/12/92Paper, 'Account of experiments on a mineral substance from Devonshire' by Humphry Davy1805
PT/8/12Paper, draft of 'On the affections of light transmitted thro' various crystallised bodies' in a letter from David Brewster to Sir H [Humphry] Davy10 September 1813
PT/6/9Paper, 'An account of some experiments on the combinations of different metals and chlorine, etc.' by John Davy[1812]
PT/9/8Paper, 'Some experiments and observations on the colours used in painting by the ancients' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy14 January 1815
PT/16/21Paper, 'On the temperature at considerable depths of the Caribbean Sea' by Capt Edward Sabine in a letter to Sir Humphry Davy18 March 1823
PT/17/12Letter, 'Regarding the relative periods at which the different families of testaceous animals appear to have been created, and on the gradual approximation which may be observed in our British strata from the fossil remains of the oldest formations, to the living inhabitants of our land and waters' from L W [Lewis Weston] Dillwyn to Sir H [Humphry] Davy1 February 1824
PT/16/26Letter, 'On fossile [fossil] shells' from L W [Lewis Weston] Dillwyn to the Right Hon Sir Humphry Davy19 May 1823
PT/16/19Paper, 'On the condensation of several gases into liquids' by M [Michael] Faraday[1823]
PT/16/20Paper, 'On the application of liquids formed by the condensation of gasses [sic] as mechanical agents' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy15 April 1823
PT/16/23Paper, 'Second part of the paper on the nerves of the orbit' by Charles Bell[1823]
PT/6/21Paper, 'On some combinations of phosphorus and sulphur, and on some other subjects of chemical enquiry' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1812]
PT/8/28Paper, 'Some experiments on the combustion of the diamond and other carbonaceous substances' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy30 April 1814
PT/8/11Paper, 'On the affections of light transmitted through crystallised bodies' by David Brewster in a letter to Sir Humphry Davy[1813]
PT/3/3Paper, 'The Bakerian Lecture, an account of some new analytical research on the nature of certain bodies, particularly the alkalies, phosphorus, sulphur, carbonaceous matter and the acids hitherto undecompounded with some general observations on chemical theory' by Humphry Davy[1808]
PT/11/6Paper, 'Some researches on flame' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1816]
PT/18/13Paper, 'On a method of obtaining pure silver from ores containing it in various alloys' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy29 March 1825
MOB/046Safety lamp by Humphry Davyc.1815
MM/14/128Details on the five bars of silver, resulting from the melting down of the Silver Plate1869
MS/426/355Copy letter from C R [Charles Richard] Weld, the Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society; to J D [John Davies] Gilbert Esq2 December 1848
MM/14/125Note from the Royal Mint concerning Plate to be melted down for the Davy Medal Fund 1869
EC/1803/03Davy, Sir Humphry: certificate of election to the Royal Society
MM/14/103'Appendix to Sir Humphry Davy's paper on a method of preventing explosions from the firedamp in coal mines'1816
MM/9/7Letter from Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford, Dover, to Sir Joseph Banks21 September 1801
DM/3/12Letter from Robert Peel, Whitehall, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society10 June 1825
DM/3/124Letter from WE Parry, Admiralty, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society25 July 1826
DM/3/77Letter from Lewis Gilson, Lower Thames Street, to Sir Humphry Davyc.1823
L&P/12/48Paper, 'An account of some experiments and observations on the constituent parts of certain vegetables and on their operation in tanning' by Humphry Davy1803
PT/73/6/7Drawings, forms of miners' safety lamp by [Humphry Davy?][1817]
MS/251/10Letter from Humphry Davy, London, to William Buckland, Professor of Mineralogy, University, Oxford18 March 1822
MM/20/51Newspaper cuttings on the Royal Society1732-1739, 1820
DM/3/121Letter from WE Parry, Admiralty, to Sir Humphry Davy, President, Royal Society6 April 1826
IM/001095Davy, Sir Humphrynd
PT/1/18/1Manuscript, 'On the quantity of carbon in carbonic acid' by Wm [William] Allen and Wm [William] Hasledine Pepys[1807]
PT/1/18/2Plate, illustration of gasometer by S [Silvanus] Bevan[1807]
PT/2/14/1Manuscript, 'On the alterations that have taken place in the structure of rocks, on the surface of the basaltic country in the counties of Derry and Antrim' from William Richardson to Humphry Davy18 April 1808
PT/2/14/2Plate, 'View of Portmoon' by unknown artist [1808]
PT/2/14/3Plate, 'View of Pleskin on the North West side of Bengore Promontory' by Robert O'Neil[1808]
PT/2/18/1Manuscript, ['Description of an apparatus for the analysis of the compound inflammable gases by slow combustion; with experiments on the gas from coal, explaining application'] by William Henry19 May 1808
PT/2/18/2Plate, diagram of combustion analysis apparatus by unknown artist19 May 1808
PT/4/1Paper, 'The Bakerian Lecture for 1810, On some of the combinations of oxymuriatic gas and oxygene, and on the chemical relations of these principles, to inflammable bodies' by Humphry Davy[1810]
PT/4/2Paper, 'The Bakerian Lecture for 1809. On some new electrochemical researches on various objects, particularly the metallic bodies from the alkalies and earths and on some combinations of hydrogene' by Humphry Davy[1809]
MC/1/70Letter from John Herapath, Cranford, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society, 23 Grosvenor Street9 June 1821
MC/1/78Letter from John Pond, Astronomer Royal, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society21 November 1821
MC/1/81Letter from James Elmes, 29 Charlotte Street, Portland Place, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society29 January 1822
MC/1/85Letter from Davies Gilbert, Treasurer of the Royal Society, East Bourne, to the Royal Societyc. October 1822
MC/1/90Letter from Sir Everard Home to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society21 June 1823
MC/1/91Letter from Louis Valentin, Nancy, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society23 June 1823
MC/1/100Letter from James South, Hackney [?] Street, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society15 January 1824
MC/1/101Letter from W.E. Cochrane, 7 Allsop Place, Regent's Park, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society 31 January 1824
MC/1/102Letter from F. Heydon, 8 Brook Green Terrace, Hammersmith, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society21 February 1824
MC/1/103Letter from Dan Copsy [?], Mount House, Braintree, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society27 February 1824
MC/1/107Letter from John Dundas Cochrane, 20 Cadogan Terrace, Sloane Street, to Stephen Lee, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society 20 March 1824
MC/1/114Letter from Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society, to the Royal Society22 June 1824
MC/1/115Letter from Jean-Baptiste Desgranges, Lyon, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society27 June 1824
MC/1/119Letter from Prof. Gazil, No. 88 Rue Montmartre, Hôtel de Corbeil, to [Sir Humphry Davy], President of the Royal Society15 July 1824
MC/1/123Letter from Prof. Gazil, No. 88 Rue Montmartre, Hôtel de Corbeil, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Societyc. December 1824
MC/1/127Letter from L. Cohen, North Street, Exeter, to Sir Humphry Davy, President of the Royal Society3 May 1825
PT/8/11/1Manuscript, 'On the affections of light transmitted through crystallised bodies' by David Brewster in a letter to Sir Humphry Davy[1813]
PT/8/11/2Plate, diagrams showing the structure of crystals by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/11/3Plate, views of topaz through a plate of agate by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/11/4Plate, diagram of rings of light shining through agate by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/11/5Plate, draft of diagram of rings of light shining through agate by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/11/6Plate, diagram of rings of light shining through moving agate by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/12/1Manuscript, draft of 'On the affections of light transmitted thro' various crystallised bodies' in a letter from David Brewster to Sir H [Humphry] Davy10 September 1813
PT/8/12/2Plate, 'First set of rings' by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/12/3Plate, alternate view of 'First set of rings' by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/12/4Plate, 'Second set of rings' by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/12/5Plate, 'Third set of rings' by unknown artist[1813]
PT/8/12/6Plate, 'Fourth set of rings' by unknown artist[1813]
MC/1/138Letter from James South, 6 Compton Terrace, Islington, to [Sir Humphry Davy], President of the Royal Society24 November 1825
MC/1/143Letter from William Pearson, 6 Compton Terrace, Islington, to [Sir Humphry Davy], President of the Royal Society12 April 1826
MC/1/146Letter from William Thomas Brande, Secretary of the Royal Society, Grafton Street, to Sir John Frederick William Herschel, Secretary of the Royal Society26 October 1826
MC/1/149Letter from [John] Davy, London, to the Royal Society18 January 1827
PT/10/1/1Manuscript, 'On the fire damp of coal mines and on a lantern for preventing its explosion' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1815]
PT/10/1/2Plate, safe lantern and valve lamp by unknown artist[1815]
PT/10/1/3Plate, valve lamp and bellows lantern by unknown artist[1815]
PT/10/1/4Plate, Peslon lamp by unknown artist[1815]
PT/10/1/5Plate, metallic gauze safe lamp and glass tube with flame sieves by unknown artist[1815]
MC/1/175Letter from Lady Jane Davy, 26 Park Street, London, to Davies Gilbert, President of the Royal Society 3 November 1829
PT/12/17/1Manuscript, 'New experiments on some of the combinations of phosphorus' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1818]
PT/12/17/2Plate, apparatus for volatilisation of phosphorus by unknown artist[1818]
MC/1/208Letter from John Davy, London, to Dr. [Peter Mark] Roget, Secretary of the Royal Society 13 March 1830
MC/1/216Letter from Moon, Boys & Graves, [publishers], Pall Mall, to Davies Gilbert, President of the Royal Society and to the Council20 April 1830
MC/1/225Letter from William Walker, London, engraver, to Davies Gilbert, President of the Royal Society26 May 1830
PT/15/2Paper, 'On the magnetic phenomena produced by electricity' in a letter from Sir H [Humphry] Davy to W H [William Hyde] Wollaston12 November 1820
PT/15/11Paper, 'Notice respecting a lunar volcano' by Capt H [Henry] Kater in a letter to Sir Humphry Davy8 February 1821
PT/15/11/1Manuscript, 'Notice respecting a lunar volcano' by Capt H [Henry] Kater in a letter to Sir Humphry Davy8 February 1821
PT/15/11/2Plate, location of volcano on lunar surface by unknown artist8 February 1821
PT/15/15Paper, 'On the papyri found at the ruins of Herculaneum' by Sir H [Humphry] Davy[1821]
PT/15/21Paper, 'On the reestablishment of a canal in the place of a portion of the urethra which had been destroyed' by Henry Earle22 March 1821
PT/15/29Paper, 'On a new compound of chlorine and carbon' by Richard Phillips and Michael Faraday[1821]
PT/15/30Paper, 'On the nerves - giving an account of some experiments on their structure and functions - which lead to a new arrangement of the system' by Charles Bell[1821]
PT/15/31Paper, 'Further researches on the magnetic phaenomena produced by electricity, with some new experiments on the properties of electrified bodies in their relations to conducting powers and temperature' by Sir Humphry Davy[1821]
PT/16/25/1Manuscript, 'On the diurnal deviations of the horizontal needle when under the influence of magnets' by Samuel Hunter Christie[1823]
PT/16/25/2Plate, 'Curves of the diurnal deviations of a magnetic needle whose directive power was diminished by the action of two bar magnets placed in the line of the dip: the N end of the needle pointing north' by Samuel Hunter Christie[1823]
PT/16/25/3Plate, 'Curves of the diurnal deviations of a magnetic needle having the north end held in equilibris at south by two bar magnets placed in the line of the dip' by Samuel Hunter Christie[1823]
PT/17/1/2Plate, views of left hind flipper of walrus by Franz Bauer[1824]
PT/17/1/3Plate, internal structure of left hind flipper of walrus by Linley Rose[1824]
PT/17/1/4Plate, stomach of the walrus by Linley Rose[1824]
PT/17/1/5Plate, gall bladder and duodenum of the walrus by Linley Rose[1824]
PT/17/1/6Plate, placenta of the seal by Linley Rose[1824]
MC/1/242Letter from Thomas Coates, [Secretary of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, Gray's Inn, to Doctor [Peter Mark] Roget, Secretary of the Royal Society 30 June 1830
MC/1/290Letter from Thomas Coates, [Secretary of the Society for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge, 59 Lincolns Inn Fields, to Dr. [Peter Mark] Roget, Secretary of the Royal Society 16 March 1831
MC/1/299Letter from Edmund R. Daniell, [Secretary of the] Royal Institution, to [Prince Augustus Frederick], President of the Royal Society and to the CouncilMarch 1831
MC/1/335Letter from [Sir James] McGrigor, [Director General at the] Army Medical Board, to the Royal Society26 October 1831
MC/4/266Letter from [John Davies] Gilbert, East Bourne [?], to the Royal Society2 December 1848
MC/4/289Letter from Anthony Ridley, Sunderland near the Sea, to Dr [Peter Mark] Roget 18 June 1849
MC/5/370Letter from John Davy, Lesketh How, Ambleside, to C R [Charles Richard] Weld, Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society6 November 1858
AP/8/20/2Unpublished statement, 'Observations and explanations relative to the subject of a letter from the right honorable Sir Joseph Banks Esq Bart K B President of the Royal Society, to Mr Russell, chargé des affaires of the United States, at the Court of London, dated Soho Square, 6th Feby 1812' by [Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford]20 February 1812
AP/11/5/1Unpublished letter, regarding observations at Australian Observatory from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to Sir Humphry Davy6 September 1822
AP/11/5/2Unpublished letter, regarding astronomical observations from Australia from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to Sir Humphry Davy18 January 1823
AP/11/5/3Unpublished letter, regarding fourth set of observations from Australia from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to Sir H [Humphry] Davy14 February 1823
AP/11/5/4Unpublished letter, regarding meteorological observations in Australia from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to Sir H [Humphry] Davy18 April 1823
AP/11/5/5Unpublished copy letter, regarding Australian geology and meteorology from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to [Sir Humphry Davy?]11 June 1824
AP/11/5/8Unpublished letter, regarding observations with invariable pendulum from Tho [Thomas] Brisbane to [Sir Humphry Davy?]6 February 1825
AP/11/5/9Unpublished observations, 'Experiments with an invariable pendulum, made at Parramatta' by [Thomas Brisbane]September-October 1824
AP/11/5/10Unpublished copy of observations, 'Experiments with an invariable pendulum' by [Thomas Brisbane]September-October 1824
AP/11/14/1Unpublished letter, on a new system of navigation from [Jean François?] Poulliot to Humphy David [Humphry Davy]23 October 1823
AP/11/14/2Unpublished manuscript, on a new system of navigation by [Jean François?] Poulliot22 October 1823
AP/12/15/1Unpublished letter, regarding the magnetic pole from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy28 September 1825
AP/12/15/2Unpublished letter, regarding the northwest magnetic pole from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy19 October 1825
AP/12/15/3Unpublished letter, regarding magnetic variation from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy29 September 1825
AP/12/15/4Unpublished letter, regarding magnetic variation and structure of the earth from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy30 November 1826
AP/12/15/6Unpublished letter, regarding southeast line of no variation from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy12 June 1826
AP/12/16/1Unpublished letter, regarding paper on muscular fibres from Everard Home to Sir Humphry [Davy]22 March 1826
AP/13/13/1Unpublished letter, regarding the position of the northwest magnetic pole from John Macdonald to Sir Humphry Davy11 March 1828
AP/13/13/2Unpublished manuscript, 'On the importance of an expedition to determine the exact position if the NW [northwest] magnetic pole' by Colonel [John] Macdonald10 March 1828
AP/13/13/3Unpublished diagram, possible locations of magnetic poles by John Macdonald10 March 1828
AP/13/13/4Unpublished diagram, variation of compass by John Macdonald10 March 1828
MC/8/339Letter from Wm J Hutton, Warrington, to [Sir Edward Sabine], President of the Royal Society23 March 1869
MC/8/340Letter from R Davy, Penketh, Warrington, to Walter White, [Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society]26 March 1869
MC/8/343Letter from R Davy, Penketh, Warrington, to Walter White, [Assistant Secretary of the Royal Society]30 March 1869
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    Collection highlights

    Browse the records of some of our collections, which cover all branches of science and date from the 12th century onwards. These include the published works of Fellows of the Royal Society, personal papers of eminent scientists, letters and manuscripts sent to the Society or presented at meetings, and administrative records documenting the Society's activities since our foundation in 1660.

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